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, defense secretary leon panetta is in afghanistan. panetta is meeting with american military leaders and afghan officials. nbc's atia abawi is in kabul this morning. bring us up to speed on what leon panetta is saying that al qaeda is basically on the run and close to being completely stamped out. >> reporter: good morning, thomas. the new secretary of defense's first trip as the defense secretary here in afghanistan, prior to arriving he talked to reporters on the plane about how he feels alg al qaeda is going right now, the war against terror. he says the strategic defeat of al qaeda is within reach, primarily pointing the the death of bin laden, the information they got from the compound including names of different key al qaeda leaders. he says this is the time to actually end the war with al qaeda. let's listen to what he had to say. >> now is the moment following what happened with bin laden, to put maximum pressure on them because i do believe that, if we continue this effort, that we can really cripple al qaeda. >> reporter: al qaeda aside, leon panetta arrived in afghanistan
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